Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. The act or process of swelling or the condition of being swollen.
  • n. A swollen organ or body part.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. the process of swelling up or the condition of being swollen
  • n. an instance of such swelling

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. The act or process of swelling or enlarging; also, the state of being swollen; expansion; tumidity; especially, the swelling up of bodies under the action of heat.
  • n. Anything swollen or enlarged, as a tumor.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. The state or process of swelling or enlarging, as with heat; expansion; tumidity.
  • n. A swollen or tumid growth or mass; tumefaction.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. swelling up with blood or other fluids (as with congestion)
  • n. the increase in volume of certain substances when they are heated (often accompanied by release of water)

Etymologies

See intumescent. (Wiktionary)

Examples

  • British America and the north of the United States, this phenomenon is explained by the flat conformation of the territories bordering on the pole, and on which there is no intumescence of the soil to oppose any obstacle to the north winds; here, in Lincoln Island, this explanation would not suffice.

    The Mysterious Island

  • For our present purpose hypertrophy may be considered as it affects the axile or the foliar organs, and also according to the way in which the increased size is manifested, as by increased thickness or swelling -- intumescence, or by augmented length-elongation, by expansion or flattening, or, lastly, by the formation of excrescences or outgrowths, which may be classed under the head of luxuriance or enation.

    Vegetable Teratology An Account of the Principal Deviations from the Usual Construction of Plants

  • Stilbite is characterized by its form, difficult gelatinizing, and intumescence before the blowpipe; from natrolite as mentioned under that species.

    Scientific American Supplement, No. 344, August 5, 1882

  • We thank thee, O God, that the South has not kept pace with New York's super-estheticism -- that when our women find themselves in an "interesting condition" they seek the seclusion of the home instead of telephoning for a reporter and a chalk artist and exploiting their intumescence in the public prints.

    The Complete Works of Brann the Iconoclast, Volume 10

  • Here, an intumescence which was to become a mountain, there, an abyss which was to be filled with an ocean or a sea.

    The Underground City

  • In the northern hemisphere, or at any rate in the part occupied by British America and the north of the United States, this phenomenon is explained by the flat conformation of the territories bordering on the pole, and on which there is no intumescence of the soil to oppose any obstacle to the north winds; here, in Lincoln Island, this explanation would not suffice.

    The Secret of the Island

  • If in one of these points the barometer stands a few lines lower than in the other, the water will rise where it finds the least pressure of air, and this local intumescence will continue, till, from the effect of the wind, the equilibrium of the air is restored.

    Travels to the Equinoctial Regions of America

  • Waves of commotion have been investigated by means of the pendulum and the seismometer* with tolerable accuracy in respect to their direction and total intensity, but by no means with reference to the internal nature of their alternations and their periodic intumescence.

    COSMOS: A Sketch of the Physical Description of the Universe, Vol. 1

  • Total and sudden transformations of a language seldom happen; conquests and migrations are now very rare; but there are other causes of change, which, though slow in their operation, and invisible in their progress, are, perhaps, as much superiour to human resistance, as the revolutions of the sky, or intumescence of the tide.

    The Works of Samuel Johnson, Volume 05 Miscellaneous Pieces

  • Total and sudden transformations of a language seldom happen; conquests and migrations are now very rare: but there are other causes of change, which, though slow in their operation, and invisible in their progress, are perhaps as much superior to human resistance, as the revolutions of the sky, or intumescence of the tide.

    Prefaces and Prologues to Famous Books with Introductions, Notes and Illustrations

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  • Total and sudden transformations of a language seldom happen; conquests and migrations are now very rare: but there are other causes of change, which, though slow in their operation, and invisible in their progress, are perhaps as much superiour to human resistance, as the revolutions of the sky, or intumescence of the tide.
    —Johnson, preface to his Dictionary

    October 25, 2008